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Pelvis and perineum
Anatomy of the female reproductive organs of the pelvis
Anatomy of the female urogenital triangle
Anatomy of the gastrointestinal organs of the pelvis and perineum
Anatomy of the male reproductive organs of the pelvis
Anatomy of the male urogenital triangle
Anatomy of the pelvic cavity
Anatomy of the pelvic girdle
Anatomy of the perineum
Anatomy of the urinary organs of the pelvis
Arteries and veins of the pelvis
Nerves and lymphatics of the pelvis
Anatomy clinical correlates: Female pelvis and perineum
Anatomy clinical correlates: Male pelvis and perineum
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When you eat, food travels over 15 feet before leaving your body! But before it leaves, it has two final stops; the rectum and the anal canal. Let’s explore these gastrointestinal organs of the pelvis and discuss the process of defecation and the structures involved.
The rectum is the terminal chamber of the large intestine that temporarily stores feces before defecation. The rectum joins with the sigmoid colon at the level of S3, forming the rectosigmoid junction.
Then, the rectum courses below in the pelvic cavity, reaching a point anterior and inferior to the tip of the coccyx. Here, the rectum pierces the levator ani muscle to join with the anal canal, forming the anorectal junction.
Let’s think of the pelvis like a bowl. The levator ani muscle acts as the bottom of the bowl to support the structures within the pelvis, especially the rectum.
Another structure that supports the rectum is the anococcygeal ligament which forms a fibrous ridge from the anal canal to the coccyx, acting as an anchor.
The relations of the rectum to the surrounding structures differs between biologically male and biologically female individuals.
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